Recipe: Butternut Squash and Cherry Tomato Tart

When you think of tarts, you probably think of dessert. But savory tarts are just as delicious, and if you haven’t tried one yet, you’re missing out.

A traditional savory tart might have eggs, cheese, and/or meat and be made in a buttery flour crust, but this one is completely vegan and gluten-free. The filling is made with tofu, nutritional yeast and coconut milk, so you get a healthy balance of protein and fat. The crust adds even more nutrition with heart-healthy almonds and walnuts, olive oil and buckwheat groats. While buckwheat sounds like it’s made from wheat, it’s actually a fruit seed and completely gluten-free.

This is the perfect dish for when your body is craving comfort food but you still want to feel great after indulging.

Ingredients

Crust

  • ½ cup almonds
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • ¾ buckwheat groats
  • 2 tbsp arrowroot powder
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1 flax egg*
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper

*For one flax egg, mix 1 tablespoon of flax meal with 2½ tablespoons of water. Let sit for 15 minutes until thickened up.

Filling

  • 1 14-ounce block of firm tofu
  • ¼ cup canned coconut milk
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 shallots, sliced thinly
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ of a medium butternut squash, cooked and diced*
  • ½ pint of cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • ½ cup basil, cut chiffonade + extra leaves for topping
  • 1-2 cups spinach, chopped

*Place the whole squash on a baking sheet and bake in the oven at 375°F for 30-40 minutes until cooked through and slightly softened. Remove seeds and stringy flesh. Once slightly cooled, cut into a dice.

Directions

1. Lightly grease a 9- or 10-inch tart pan with removable bottom with olive oil. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Grind the almonds, walnuts, and buckwheat groats in a food processor until they’ve turned into a flour. Remove to a mixing bowl.

3. To the mixing bowl, add the arrowroot powder, flax egg, olive oil, water, spices, and salt & pepper. Mix thoroughly with a spoon until well combined and you have a dough that sticks together when pressed with your fingers.

4. Pour the crust mixture into the tart pan. Use a flat-bottomed glass or your hands to evenly press the mixture into the bottom and sides of the pan. Bake the crust in the oven for 12-14 minutes until it is set and firm to touch. Let cool slightly before filling.

5. For the filling, press the tofu: place the tofu block on several layers of paper towels on a plate of cutting board. Top the tofu with more paper towels and place a heavy book on top of it to press the water out. Leave it for 20-30 minutes.

6. While the tofu is resting, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Once hot, add the shallots and garlic, and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned 5-7 minutes. Add the cubed butternut squash, basil, and spinach. Sauté a few minutes until the greens have wilted.

7. While this mixture is cooking, add the pressed tofu, coconut milk, nutritional yeast, and seasonings to a food processor. Blend until creamy and well combined. Add tofu mixture to veggie mixture and stir until well combined.

8. Pour filling mixture into baked tart crust. Spread evenly. Top with sliced cherry tomatoes.

9. Bake the quiche in the oven for 30-35 minutes until filling is set and lightly browned. Cool on wire rack before cutting.

10. Top with fresh basil leaves.

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